The Depot and Jazz in June welcomes jazz organists, Garrett Jacobson and Jeremy Thomas, to the Winter Wind stage on Sunday, January 21, 2018, for a rare and intriguing evening showcasing one of the most expressive instruments in jazz – the Hammond organ. Music begins at 7:00 pm in The Depot, 200 S. Jones. Complimentary refreshments are served and wine samples are available for purchase from Native Sprits Winery. Tickets are $20.
A relatively ‘new’ instrument in jazz, the Hammond organ was but a curiosity when Fats Waller and Count Basie brought attention to it in the early 1900’s. It wasn’t until a young Jimmy Smith came along in the 1950’s when the instrument was fully embraced in jazz for its extreme utility and unique and expressive sound. Smiths’ work, and that of Charles Earland, ‘Brother’ Jack McDuff, Jimmy McGriff, Dr. Lonnie Smith and others, inspired two young and gifted musicians from Oklahoma to take up the Hammond.
Despite the instrument’s increased popularity and very common usage in all walks of contemporary music, true jazz organ luminaries remain relatively few and far between. “That’s what makes Garrett Jacobson and Jeremy Thomas such a treasure for us in Oklahoma,” says Jim Johnson, Program Chair, Jazz In June. “To have both of these killer organ grinders trade licks on the stage together is something that I’ve wanted to see and hear since my musician friends first bragged to me about a similar (now legendary) occasion a few years back.”
“Expect a ‘conversation’ between Jeremy and myself”, says Jacobson in response to this event’s billing as a so-called ‘duel’. “We’re each just happy to be carrying the torch of the powerful and expressive instrument… and with our own (individual) flavor added.”
For this January 21st engagement, Jacobson and Thomas will be accompanied by fellow Oklahoma jazz greats, Lee Rucker (trumpet) and Dave Bowen (drums) for a truly swingin’ and Okie-fueled mainstream jazz showcase.
Collaborative Concerts produced by Jazz in June and The Depot are made possible, in part, by grants from The Norman Arts Council, The Oklahoma Arts Council, and by the numerous sponsors of and donors to both Jazz in June and The Depot. Both are non-profit organizations serving the people of Norman and surrounding communities with great musical programming.
The Depot, located in the historic Santa Fe Train Depot, produces Summer Breeze, Winter Wind and Whistle Stop Concerts, Gallery Exhibitions, Second Sunday Poetry Readings, and manages the rental of the Norman Depot for weddings, meetings, parties and other events. The Depot is dedicated to creating and presenting excellent and innovative fine arts programming for the enrichment and education of the community.
Jazz In June Inc. is dedicated to the promotion, preservation, and perpetuation of jazz and related musical forms. Jazz In June was founded in 1984 by the Norman Arts and Humanities Council and Cimarron Opera. The Jazz in June festival has since developed into a much-anticipated annual event, featuring three evenings of outdoor concerts, related artist clinics, public radio programs and public jazz and blues jam sessions attended by a total of some 50,000 people per year. Past performers include David Sanborn, Chuck Mangione, the Ellis Marsalis Quartet and Duke Ellington Small Band.